YEREVAN, February 26. /ARKA/. Armenia’s permanent representatives in the Council of Europe have marked the 25th anniversary of Armenian pogroms in Azerbaijan’s city of Sumgait by issuing a statement.
They said in their statement that atrocities were committed against Armenians in Azerbaijan in February 1988 in response to peaceful demands of Armenians living in Karabakh to join Armenia with Azerbaijani authorities’ complicity and amid anti-Armenian propaganda.
The massacre committed by Azerbaijani militants was raging in Sumgait on February 27, 28 and 29.
The attacks were carried out in accordance with the lists composed beforehand. Hundreds of innocent people were killed and more than 200 apartments were destroyed, and dozens of cars were burnt. As a result, thousands of Armenians fled their homes in Azerbaijan.
The authors of the statement stressed that testimonies and evidence give ground for saying that these pogroms were well-thought-out and that their masterminds were the leaders of the Soviet Azerbaijan, and the Armenians in Azerbaijan survived full extermination thanks to Nagorno-Karabakh guerillas, whose battles ended in signing a cease-fire agreement in May 1994.
“Unfortunately, official Baku is adamant in its anti-Armenian propaganda and it keeps insisting on military solution of the Karabakh problem,” the statement says.
Rejecting any peaceful way, Azerbaijani authorities glorified Ramil Safarov, who murdered Armenian officer Gurgen Margaryan while the latter asleep in Budapest, where both attended the NATO-sponsored language course. They also announced the reward of €10,000 for ear of writer Aylisli Akram, who dared to say a good word about Armenian nation and whose books were publicly burnt.
“Now, 25 years after massacre in Sumgait, we attract the international community’s attention to alarming things in Azerbaijan, where hatred toward Armenians is increasingly escalating fueled by the current authorities in Baku, who are preparing their society for a warm not peace,” the statement says.
Pogroms which started in Sumgait were continued also in other cities of Azerbaijan.
Armenia has sheltered more than 360,000 refugees over a period between 1988 and 1992. Other 140,000 Armenians from Azerbaijan migrated to CIS countries.-0---